Can you help improve patients’ and carers’ experiences of South East Coast Ambulance services?

April 5, 2017
(Shared on behalf of South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation trust)

Can you help us to improve patients’ and carers’ experiences of our services?

Providing the best treatment we can and ensuring good clinical outcomes for our patients are key elements of a quality service.  However, it is equally important that our patients and their carers have as good an experience as possible when they use our services. 

The Department of Health defines a positive patient experience as:

“Getting good treatment in a comfortable, caring and safe environment, delivered in a calm and reassuring way; having information to make choices, to feel confident and feel in control; being talked to and listened to as an equal and being treated with honesty, respect and dignity”.

Building on the best: Choice, responsiveness and equity in the NHS (DH, 2009)

Tell us what you think

South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) is planning to develop a Patient Experience Strategy, which will set out the Trust’s values in terms of patient and carer experience, and help us to develop a culture that places patient experience at the centre of everything we do. 

We know that involving patients, carers and our staff in this work going forwards will be crucial to its success, so to begin with we would like to hear from you to know:

  • What do you think makes a good patient/carer experience?
  • What do you think our patient experience strategy should consider/include, for example what patient groups would it be helpful to focus on; which elements of our services should we look at; what mechanisms would be useful for obtaining feedback from patients and carers; etc?

We are really keen to make your views count, so please share your thoughts with us by emailing Louise Hutchinson, SECAmb’s Patient Experience Lead, at

Join our Patient Experience Group

We have very recently established a Patient Experience Group and are keen to recruit two patients and a carer (you may be both) to provide their perspective alongside our staff, management, public governor and Healthwatch members. 

The group’s duties will include:


  • reviewing all kinds of feedback SECAmb receives to help to identify areas where improvements might be made and areas of good practice.
  • considering new ways of obtaining feedback from patients, carers and particular patient groups.
  • developing ways to share and learn from people’s experiences of SECAmb’s services, whether good, bad or indifferent
  • reviewing the actions taken as a result of our work and measuring their success.

There will also be opportunities to be involved in any projects that are devised to address particular areas of work we may find we are concerned about or would like to know more about.

The Patient Experience Group will meet every two months just until the group and its work plan are established, and every three months thereafter.  In May the Trust is moving to a new headquarters building in Crawley, which is in the centre of our huge geographical patch.  Meetings are likely to be held there, and reasonable travel expenses will of course be paid.


If you are interested in getting involved you should:

  • have recent experience of using our services, either as a patient or a carer.
  • have the ability to look beyond personal experience.
  • have an enquiring mind.
  • have a desire to help us to improve services for all of our patients and carers.
  • be able to attend meetings every two to three months.

If you are interested and would like to know more, please contact Louise Hutchinson, Patient Experience Lead, by email to; via the SECAmb switchboard on 0300 123 0999; via SMS to 0790 999 2664; or in writing to:

Louise Hutchinson

South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust


40-42 Friars Walk



Please do also let us know at that time of any particular communication or other needs you may have.

The closing date for applications is Thursday 13 April, and those who express an interest will be invited for an informal chat with Louise and one of our Healthwatch colleagues during late April.  The date of the next Patient Experience Group meeting is Monday 8 May 2017 from 2pm-4pm, and new members should be available to attend the meeting.

Thank you in advance for your interest and your feedback – we look forward to hearing from you.

Louise Hutchinson, Patient Experience Lead

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